Everything you needed to know about exotic sheep was on display at Brian Hales' property Wimbledon recently.

In pens were 13 different types of exotic sheep with information about them, some about to be shorn.

In the woolshed the shearing platform allowed three shearers to operate at once, one of them being Richard Welch who with four others set a world lamb shearing record in 2013, shearing 2638 lambs in an eight-hour day.

The shearers and rousies shear Karakul sheep.
The shearers and rousies shear Karakul sheep.

All had to work hard to deal with sheep of different shapes and temperaments compared with normal flocks and one of the biggest hazards was horns especially with the Pitt Island rams.

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While the shearing took place the Norsewood Choir sang four numbers including The Lonely Goatherd and Don't Worry Be Happy and the Dannevirke Pipe Band performed proving that the shearing shed acoustics were great.

A Karakul long fleece is explained.
A Karakul long fleece is explained.

Fleeces, their skirting and carding were explained and a number of craft groups and specialists displayed their products for sale.

Melissa Fryer from Feilding who runs felting workshops had some of her products, Annette Montgomerie from Whangaparoa, owner of Twisted Sisters had art yarns, shawls and handspun coats, Dannevirke Spinners and Weavers and Waione Wool Carding also had a range of lovely products.

Products made from these special fleeces by Melissa Fryer of Feilding (foreground) and Annette Montgomery of Whangaparoa near Auckland (background).
Products made from these special fleeces by Melissa Fryer of Feilding (foreground) and Annette Montgomery of Whangaparoa near Auckland (background).

Scattered around the outskirts of the woolshed were free stations to give visitors a taste of the different meats cooked up in stews.

Over 300 people experienced the tortuous and uneven Highway 52 out to Wimbledon but said the experience was totally worth it on a perfect spring day.

A Spanish stew made from Pitt Island sheep was served up by Kathryn Willoughby, Brian Hales sister.
A Spanish stew made from Pitt Island sheep was served up by Kathryn Willoughby, Brian Hales sister.

These included 10 Model A Fords from the Hawke's Bay and Central Hawke's Bay Clubs and even a 1937 Packard owned by Brian Taylor of Napier which made the journey.

If the sheep related experience was not enough visitors had the opportunity to get up close with peripatus, a rare worm, a gecko and some fresh water fish plus learn about a rata recovery programme and a fossil.